While we’ve been travelling, I’ve fallen back in love with reading. I used to read everyday, I’d entirely fallen out of the habit. It was rather nice to sit out on the balcony with beverage of choice – often a coffee or beer, reading and chilling out. I’ve all but one book in the picture, The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher. I swapped it in a hostel in Kuta.
We picked up a few travel guides for Bali and in the end we preferred the Lonely Planet Bali & Lombok Guide*. It had generally good information. It has maps and useful information on various sights to visit and what to expect on your travels. We did two of the hikes near Ubud, which were good, although for the Campuhan Ridge Walk, when you get to the artist village, I would recommend turning back and going back the way you came. It’s nicer than finishing the hike along the road. Also, in the book it says you can walk the The Elephant Cave. Don’t. It’s often very warm and humid, just get a taxi, you get get one quite cheaply and you’ll enjoy it more if you’re not melting from the heat. We walked there and got a taxi back because it was so warm. The guide book was a handy thing to have while out & about, it’s not too big, so doesn’t take up much space in your bag.
I picked up The Mindfulness Journal *by Corinne Sweet while in Ubud, I’ve been gradually learning how to meditate, nothing fancy, I just sit quietly for a few minutes at a time. This book is a very handy reference book, with some guidance on how to deal with certain situations. I’ve been carrying it around with me to pick up to read a few pages when I have a few minutes. Or while travelling. I’ve been really enjoying it and would recommend it if you’re looking for a very simple meditation guide book.
Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher. I started reading this book on the flight to Bali and managed to finish it in a few weeks of easy reading. This was OK, it was a pleasant read, I wasn’t particularly blown away by this. I enjoyed it but I wouldn’t read it again. I do love Carrie Fisher and I imagined her voice as I read the book which was quite fun. It definitely had some great moments.
Crusher* by Niall Leonard. While we were staying in Kuta Learning To Surf, I swapped the Princess Diarist for Crusher. I’m really pleased I did, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s a crime drama set in London. There’s some gangster in it, but not too heavy handed and a great twist – I’m just not saying where as I don’t want to give it away. I read this quite quickly, the narrative moves along nicely making it an easy read. I breezed through it as I had re-discovered the joy of reading before bed and always managed at least a chapter. Definitely recommend checking it out.
A Game Of Ghosts* by John Connolly. I have only just finished this, I started it in my last two weeks of Bali. I’m a John Connolly fan, the Charlie Parker detective series in particular. I’ve already read quite a few in the series and after reading this, I now want to read all the books I’ve missed. This is great if you enjoy a darker crime thriller, it’s a wee bit gruesome here & there, but nothing too over the top. Charlie Parker is a bit of an old school detective in America and although the story can be a wee bit predictable in parts, there are always subtle parts to the story with all the rich extra detail. There is lots of suspense and plenty of drama to keep you occupied for a few weeks. You can read this as a stand alone book, of course there are references to previous storylines but I don’t think it detracts from the book. Another book that you should add to your Summer reading list.
What are your recommendations for Summer reading? Have you a holiday reading list already planned? As you can see I’m a bit of a crime thriller fan.